During the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference, Microsoft and Vodafone outlined a technical roadmap for adding mobile Web services to applications, expanding new business opportunities for application developers and mobile network operators.
The road map proposes a model that adopts the existing industry-standard Web services architecture to simplify the development of applications integrating mobile network services. The road map also addresses issues such as integrating mobile security and payment services with the Web services architecture, as well as exposing location and messaging services. By enabling applications developers to use a consistent, standardized development approach, the two companies seek to dramatically increase the number of applications that can access mobile network services from mobile network terminals and PCs. The Web services architecture is vendor-, platform- and device-independent, encouraging broad participation of mobile network operators, application developers and platform providers. Microsoft and Vodafone will invite industry feedback on the mobile Web services efforts at a series of industry workshops, the first of which will be in London in January 2004.
"This is a great opportunity for developers to apply their existing Web services skills to access mobile network services," said Sanjay Parthasarathy, vice president of the Platform Strategy and Partner Group at Microsoft. "We are excited to see a wide range of new applications and user experiences that make use of mobile Web services."
Ian Maxwell, group strategic relationship director at Vodafone, said, "To jump-start standardized mobile Web services, Microsoft and Vodafone have produced a technical road map proposal for the industry. The proposed road map is an important first step toward gaining industry consensus on the convergence of mobile and PC applications and services. We look forward to working more closely with the industry to progress this initial mobile Web services standardization work and take it forward to standards bodies."
Attendees at PDC include enterprise developers, software architects, software engineers, Web developers and Web development managers. Microsoft will offer a technical breakout session 30th October that will detail how developers can use Microsoft's Visual Studio .NET development tools to build applications today for PCs and mobile devices that use mobile Web services. Mobile Web services in live operation from Vodafone will support the examples shown in the session.
The companies also released a white paper, titled "Mobile Web Services: Convergence of PC and Mobile Applications and Services.", available in the download link below.